Search Grand Rapids Griffins

News Releases

TRAVIS RICHARDS NIGHT NOV. 24

No. 24 of “Mr. Griffin” to be Retired During Pre-Game Ceremony

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.
– Travis Richards, the only Grand Rapids Griffins player to play in each of the team’s first 10 seasons (1996-2006), will have his no. 24 jersey retired during a ceremony on Friday, Nov. 24, prior to the Griffins’ 7 p.m. game against the Chicago Wolves.

As part of the festivities for “Travis Richards Night presented by Grand Craft,” the first 1,500 kids will receive a Griffins T-shirt featuring Richards’ name and legendary no. 24 on the back. The organization will also mark the occasion with presentations and events throughout the evening.

Richards, 36, played more games and seasons in Grand Rapids than any other professional athlete in the city’s history and, prior to his retirement on June 14, had the longest continuous stretch of service with one team of any player in the American Hockey League. Furthermore, at the time of Richards’ retirement announcement, only five pro athletes in the state of Michigan – Kris Draper, Nicklas Lidstrom and Steve Yzerman of the Detroit Red Wings, and Jason Hanson and Cory Schlesinger of the Detroit Lions – had logged more consecutive, uninterrupted seasons of play in their current uniform than “Mr. Griffin.”

Richards became the second player and first American to sign with the Griffins on July 26, 1996, and he departed as Grand Rapids’ all-time leader with 655 games played. He helped lead the Griffins to five division titles, four conference championship appearances and an IHL Turner Cup Finals berth (2000) during the last seven years.

Once the Griffins’ record-holder with 126 consecutive games played, Richards was a mainstay on the team’s blue line during its first eight seasons, missing only 43 of 650 regular season contests and appearing in all 59 playoff games from 1996-2004. However, injuries limited him to 48 games since the start of the 2004-05 campaign. He played in 13 contests last season and earned an assist in his final game in a Griffins uniform, a 5-4 overtime win against Milwaukee at Van Andel Arena on Dec. 3, 2005.

During his storied career, Richards garnered accolades such as the captaincy of the PlanetUSA squad at the 2004 AHL All-Star Classic in Grand Rapids and Second Team IHL All-Star honors in 2001. He served three seasons (2001-04) as the Griffins’ captain – the longest tenure in franchise history – and the other seven as an alternate captain, skating alongside 265 teammates through the years.

In addition to his games-played primacy, Richards ranks among the franchise’s regular season career leaders with a plus-131 rating (1st), 182 assists (2nd), 238 points (2nd), 995 shots (2nd), 24 power play goals (T3rd), 502 penalty minutes (5th) and 56 goals (7th).

Richards played nearly his entire pro career in West Michigan. After representing the United States at the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, the former Minnesota Golden Gopher made his pro debut with the IHL’s Kalamazoo Wings late in the 1993-94 season. He stayed with the Wings through the 1995-96 campaign, also appearing in three NHL games with the parent Dallas Stars.

In all, Richards played 805 regular season contests during his 13-year career, registering 293 points (70-223—293) and 632 penalty minutes. He registered his 800th regular season game as a pro on Nov. 20, 2005 at Toronto.

Search Archive »




Browse by Year »

2014
2013
2012
2011
2010
2009
2008
2007
2006
2005
2004

Browse by Month »

October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004